Russia to Use Syrian Combat Experience in Upgrading Helicopter Blades



Russia will use its aerial combat experience in Syria to replace classic metal helicopter rotor blades with ones made from composite materials.

MOSCOW            The Mi-28NM attack helicopter, a recent upgraded version of the Mi-28N “Night Hunter” vehicle, became the first helicopter to receive composite blades and will be supplied to the Russian army by 2018, Russia’s Aerospace Forces Commander Viktor Bondarev told the Izvestia newspaper.

“Using helicopters in a desert area with a dusty atmosphere, where sandstorms are created by takeoffs and landings taking place on unequipped pads, is always accompanied by increased attrition to the blades…Dust is an abrasive material. This has been and will be a problem that cannot be resolved completely, but can be reduced, including by the use of modern composite blades,” the Russian Helicopters company, which is a part of the Rostec State Corporation, told the newspaper.

The new blades, designed at the Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant, have an increased fatigue strength, service life and better combat characteristics, according to the company.


Produced from carbon fibers, the composite blades are manufactured using a single mold and have already been used in the production of multirole Mi-38 and Mi-35M attack helicopters, the company added, noting that the use of anti-abrasive coating is also being researched.On September 30, 2015, Moscow began its anti-terror campaign in Syria on Damascus’ request, during which the Russian Aerospace Forces conducted precision airstrikes against the targets of Daesh, outlawed in many countries, including Russia.

In mid-March, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu to start withdrawing most of Russia’s military contingent from Syria after accomplishing its objective, while leaving a minor residual force.

Russian Defence Minister announced the start of large-scale humanitarian operation aimed at providing assistance to civil population of the Aleppo city


Today, working session devoted to the situation in Syria was held under the leadership of the Russian Defence Minister General of the Army Sergei Shoigu.

Opening the session, the Defence Minister stressed: “We are to make a number of decisions concerning stabilization of the situation in the Syrian Arab Republic”.

“The ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra terrorist groupings have launched offensive within June and July near the Aleppo city. The Russian Aerospace Forces are providing active support to the government troops. Joint operations caused elimination of significant number of insurgents, terrorist training camps, plant producing armament, explosive devices, and combat hardware,” noted Sergei Shoigu.

The head of the defence department reminded that number of inhabited areas and regions (including ones located in the territories controlled by insurgents), which had joined the ceasefire process was increasing under the facilitation of the Russian Centre for reconciliation of opposing sides.

Within last three days, representatives of another 77 inhabited areas have signed truce agreements.

Currently there are 294 such inhabited areas. Moreover, leaders of armed formations have singed 61 ceasefire application forms.

However, there are negative stats.

Within last two weeks, positions of the Syrian government troops have suffered 8 terrorist attacks performed by 21 suicide bombers and with the use of 3 infantry fighting vehicles and 12 car bombs. These terrorist acts killed more than 500 people and injured approximately 2,000 ones.

“We have been continuously appealing to opposing sides for reconciliation, but every time insurgents broke the “silence regime”, shelled inhabited areas, attacked positions of the government troops. All this caused bad humanitarian situation in the Aleppo city and its suburbs”, stressed the head of the Russian defence department.

Therefore, in accordance to the decree of the President of the Russian Federation, the Minister of Defence ordered to start large-scale humanitarian operation aimed at providing assistance to civil population of the Aleppo city in cooperation with the Syrian government.

International humanitarian organizations active in Syria are invited to join the operation.

In order to rescue civilians, who are kept by terrorists, and insurgents, who made decision to lay down arms, the Russian Center for reconciliation of opposing sides in cooperation with the Syrian government is to open 3 humanitarian corridors.

Food service and first aid posts will be deployed in these areas.

“Taking into account that the American partners did not provide us with information about separation of Jabhat al-Nusra and units of the Free Syrian Army, the 4th corridor is to be opened in the north of Aleppo in direction to the Castello Road for safe withdrawal of armed insurgents. It is to be stressed that we take this step exceptionally for providing security to citizens of Aleppo,” explained the Minster of Defence.

General of the Army expressed his hope that the American colleagues would provide the Russian side with location coordinates of units of the Free Syrian Army and information concerning moderate opposition detachments: what armament and hardware they are equipped with, how many tanks, infantry fighting vehicle and artillery guns there are.

The population will get information about routes of leaving from the city along humanitarian corridors in leaflets, SMS, and by loudspeakers.

The head of the defence department ordered to organize airdropping of food, medicaments, and articles of prime necessity for civilians. The special attention is to be paid to delivery of means providing care to children and critically ill persons.

The Minister of Defence appealed to the Syrian leadership for guarantees of amnesty and pardon for those insurgents, who had not lay down weapons and stained their arms with blood yet, in order to prevent useless victims.

“If we do not want repetition of the Iraqi, Libyan, of Afghani scenarios, consequences of which the world had been facing for years, we suggest our partners uniting and concentrating on implementation of agreements reached in Geneva and Moscow last week instead of accusatory speeches,” stated General of the Army Sergei Shoigu.

He also said that in accordance to the order of the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, under the personal request of John Kerry, the United States Secretary of State, Deputy Chief of the Main Operational Directorate General Stanislav Gadjimagomedov with a group of experts was going to Geneva in order to develop joint measures aimed at stabilization of situation near Aleppo.

Deputy Defence Minister Anatoly Antonov was ordered to organize cooperation with international humanitarian organizations; Acting Chief of the General Staff Lieutenant General Sergei Rudskoy was ordered to interact with the Syrian government in the field of opening and providing security to the humanitarian corridors.

Russia, China to Hold Joint South China Sea Drills in September

An aerial photo taken though a glass window of a Taiwanese military plane shows the view of Itu Aba, which the Taiwanese call Taiping, at the South China Sea, March 23, 2016


Russia and China will hold joint naval exercises in the highly-contested South China Sea.

 Russia and China will hold joint naval exercises in the South China Sea, the Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun said Thursday.

“Based on the consensus reached by the parties, the Chinese and Russian navies will hold joint Sea Cooperation-2016 exercises in the South China Sea in September,” Yang told a briefing, noting that the drills “are not aimed at third countries.”

A highly-contested region through which roughly $5 trillion in international trade passes annually, most of the waterway is claimed by China, though there are overlapping claims by Taiwan, Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Brunei.

Over 1,000 Russian Soldiers Partake in South Ossetia Field Firing Drills

Fourth military base personnel engaged in drill training, South Ossetia


About 1,000 Russian servicemen took part in the firing exercises in South Ossetia, the press service of Russia’s Southern Military District announced on Thursday.

Over 1,000 Russian servicemen took part in field firing exercises in South Ossetia, the press service of Russia’s Southern Military District announced on Thursday.

“The divisions of the Russian military base in the Southern Military District, stationed in the republic of South Ossetia, conducted field firing at the Dzartsemi firing range,” the press service said in a statement.

The drills involved T-72A tanks, BMP-2 infantry fighting vehicles, Gvozdika self-propelled howitzers, 2S12 Sani mortar systems, AGS-17 and RPG-7 grenade launchers, and small arms, according to the ministry.

The drills brought together over 1,000 soldiers of mechanized infantry, tank, artillery and special units, as well as some 300 units of military equipment.In August 2008, Georgia launched a military offensive against the breakaway republics of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, ending in a five-day war with Russia. Following the conflict, Moscow recognized the sovereignty of South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

In early 2009, Russia set up its 4th Military Base in South Ossetia, with two main compounds — one on the northwestern outskirts of the capital of Tskhinvali and another in Java, or Dzau, the second largest urban settlement in South Ossetia. The base was deployed to protect South Ossetia as well as the southern border of Russia.

Russian military in Tajikistan wake up on alert

© Nozim Kalandarov/TASS

YEKATERINBURG, July 22 /TASS/. The servicemen of the 201st military base deployed in Tajikistan have been woken up on alert, the press service of the central military district said on Friday.

Two garrisons located in the cities of Dushanbe and Kurgan-Tyube will hold classes of combat readiness.

“The units have been put on high alert. The personnel is drilling maneuvers aimed at fulfilling surprise tasks such as repelling an attack of conditional enemy at vital facilities,” the press service said.

The 201st military base is the biggest military facility in Russia located outside its borders. It is located in three cities – Dushanbe, Kulyab and Kurgan-Tyube. Under an agreement signed in October 2012, the unit will stay in Tajikistan until 2042.


Armata Tanks to Get Russian-Made Sights as MoD Phases Out Imports

T-14 tanks with the Armata Universal Combat Platforms


The next generation of armored vehicles based on the Armata and Kurganets tracked platforms will feature Russian-made sight matrices instead of French ones now, wrote citing Defense Ministry sources in Moscow.

The program of import substitution was launched in Russia in 2014 after Western nations stopped selling important parts and other equipment to Russia over its alleged involvement in the Ukrainian crisis.President Vladimir Putin then ordered the country’s defense industry to speed up the development and production of a number of vitally important “units and parts,” while still allowing them to look for alternative Western suppliers.

Shortly before the famous showcase of Russia’s top-of-the-line tanks and armored vehicles based on the Armata and Kurganets platforms during last year’s Victory Day Parade on Red Square, the deputy head of the Military-Industrial Commission, Oleg Bochkarev, said that they were 100-percent developed and built in Russia.

“We are already working on hardware components needed for mass production of [the next generation of tanks and armored vehicles],” he said early last year. learned that by “hardware components” Bochkarev meant, among other things, thermal sights and motion control gear for Armata and Kurganets tanks and APCs.

Meanwhile, the Defense Ministry is closely monitoring the process of replacing US, European and Ukrainian-made parts in Russian defense production.

The Russian Defense Ministry unveiled its new Armata tank at the May 9 Victory Day military parade in Moscow in 2015.

The tank is operated by a crew of three, housed in an armored capsule at the front. Its main armament includes a 125-mm smoothbore cannon and a 7.62-mm remote-control machine gun.

New Cold War: ‘If NATO Encroaches on Nuclear Russia, It will be Punished’

Polish troops land with parachutes at the military compound near Torun, central Poland, on June 7, 2016, as part of the NATO Anaconda-16 military exercise


Influential Russian Foreign Ministry expert Sergey Karaganov says that Moscow has lost all trust in NATO fearing that the military alliance is planning an invasion and said the crisis is as bad as it was during the height of the Cold War.

In an interview with German magazine Der Spiegel, Sergey Karaganov, a member of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Policy and Defense Council says that the risk of a hot war against the United States and Europe has been on the rise for nearly a decade with tensions approaching levels only seen at the height of the Cold War.Karaganov said that statements by both sides attest to the dangerous state of the crisis and blasted the West for its continued saber rattling along Russia’s border with NATO moving to install a permanent troop presence in Poland and after weeks of massive war games culminating in June with a 30,000 troop show of force led by German soldiers on the 75th anniversary of the Nazi invasion.

“The Russian media is more reserved than Western media, though you have to understand that Russia is very sensitive about defense. We have to be prepared for everything. That is the source of this occasionally massive amount of propaganda,” he said. “But what is the West doing? It is doing nothing but vilifying Russia; it believes that we are threatening to attack. The situation is comparable to the crisis at the end of the 1970s and beginning of the 1980s.”

The expert’s remarks on the late-1970s and early 1980s was a reference to the build-up of intermediate-range nuclear missiles in Europe that could have led to an unintended nuclear war. The missiles had a very short approach time that left not time for an attacked side to react, making automatic retaliation the only possible reaction to a decapitating nuclear barrage – it also increased the likelihood of an accidental nuclear war outbreak as false radar readings often led each side to believe an attack was launched.

Karaganov sees the buildup of NATO forces on Russia’s border as akin to the installation of Peshing and SS-20 missiles three decades ago which maximize the risk that the trains of war may leave the station before cooler heads can prevail.

“Fears in countries like Lithuania and Latvia are to be allayed by NATO stationing weapons there. But that doesn’t help them; we interpret that as a provocation. In a crisis, we will destroy exactly these weapons. Russia will never again fight on its own territory,” explained Karaganov.

“The help offered by NATO is not symbolic help for the Baltic states. It is a provocation. If NATO initiates an encroachment – against a nuclear power like ourselves – it will be punished,” he stressed.

He explained that the Russia views the massive wargames in NATO’s summer of provocation as a prelude to an invasion by the West and cautioned that Moscow has zero trust in the military alliance.

“We believe that Russia is morally in the right. There won’t be any fundamental concessions coming from our side,” he said. “Psychologically, Russia has now become a Eurasian power – I was one of the intellectual fathers of the eastward pivot. But now I am of the opinion that we shouldn’t turn away from Europe. We have to find ways to revitalize our relations.”